Race of Supreme Court Justice Doesn’t Matter to Most

Race of Supreme Court Justice Doesn’t Matter to Most

Published May 19, 2009

It appears that most Americans aren’t as concerned about the race and gender of the next Supreme Court Justice as they are about level of experience.

A new CNN/Opinion Research Group poll shows that while the focus in the media has centered on whether President Obama will nominate a woman or a Hispanic or an African American to fill the slot left by retiring Justice David Souter, most Americans say that such issues are “not important at all.”

Thirty-two percent said it’s not important for the nominee to have experience in elected office. But more than two-thirds of those surveyed, 67 percent, said they want a justice who has experience on the bench.

Although Obama has been characterized by his critics as an ultra-liberal, 37 percent of respondents said they expect the president to choose a moderate, and 35 percent even said they believe he might nominate someone who is either very conservative or somewhat conservative. Only 27 percent said they looked for him to appoint someone liberal or very liberal.

When it comes to the issue of abortion, an overwhelming majority – 68 percent – said they do not want to see the Supreme Court overturn Roe v. Wade, the 1973 ruling that established a woman’s right to choose an abortion.

Written by BET.com Staff


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